Sizzling Onions tipped for England berth
Durham coach Geoff Cook has backed Graham Onions to play a part for England this summer after his 10-wicket haul against Middlesex.
The 29-year-old has not played a five-day match for England since the third Test against South Africa on the 2009-2010 tour, in which he took three wickets and hung around for 11 balls with Graeme Swann right at the end of the match to secure his side a draw. The Durham man burst onto the scene in 2009, taking seven wickets on his Test debut against the West Indies before featuring in the successful Ashes campaign later that summer. He looked set for a lengthy spell in the side before a career-threatening back injury robbed him of more than 12 months of action. The Gateshead-born star returned to the county scene last year and bowled well as the north east county came up short in their bid for a third Championship title and he has been included in several England squads in recent times without actually playing a game. But the accurate paceman did his chances no harm at all with an excellent display at Lord's last week, with Durham unable to force victory on the final day due to the weather. Onions bowled England Test skipper Andrew Strauss twice in the match to give him and the selectors a gentle nudge and Cook admits that he expects to see the popular bowler back in international colours sooner rather than later. "I would not be surprised if we were missing him fairly early in the season," he told the Northern Echo. "Then there is a lot of one-day international cricket and a lot of Lions four-day cricket, so the likelihood is we will miss one or two with Ben Stokes part of the England squad." Onions has taken 28 Test scalps to date at an average of 31.03, while he has claimed four one-day international wickets from the same number of matches.